Christmas Cinnamon & Honey Twist Bread
{serves 4-5… or 1 Cam}

2 C organic all-purpose flour
1 egg
1/2 C raw sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 C warm water {not lukewarm!}
1 packet dry active yeast
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
about 2 tablespoons cinnamon & sugar, mixed
about 3 tablespoons honey + more for drizzling

I started with my basic bread recipe that I use for focaccia and added a few more simple ingredients. Dissolve the yeast packet in 1/4 C warm water. The temperature should be about 100-110 degrees. Pour in a tablespoon or two of sugar to help it activate. Let stand for about 10 minutes or until the yeast doubles. You’ll know that it has when there is a volume of foam on the top of the water. In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, and extracts with a fork. Mix well. Mix in the egg.  Add in the yeast water with a fork until all of the flour has been absorbed into a sticky ball. Add in about 1/4 C more water, mixing with the fork. You may need to add more if the flour isn’t completely incorporated yet into the dough. Add a tablespoon at a time, stirring after each addition, until you don’t need anymore. On a lightly floured surface, and your hands floured as well, knead the dough for about 5 minutes until it’s in the form of a sticky ball. There are a lot of tutorials for kneading on youtube, but as long as you are vigorously pushing the dough with the palm of your hand and folding and turning it each time, it should knead. This is an important step; it’s what incorporates the yeast into the whole dough. Set the ball of kneaded dough in a bowl rubbed in olive oil and let stand for about an hour.

Preheat the oven to 350. Roll out the dough to about 1/4 – 1/2 inch thick and smear honey and then the cinnamon sugar mixture all over it. Please feel free to add more than I did! Roll it up like a burrito and then slice it down the middle with a knife. Now you have two long doughs. With the cut side with layers facing up, twist the two doughs together to form one twist, and then bring the ends together to form a wreath. Carefully transfer the bread wreath to a parchment paper lined baking sheet or well oiled baking sheet. Bake for about twenty minutes — but be sure to keep an eye on it so it doesn’t brown too much. Every oven cooks differently. I have to watch mine very carefully. If you have a serious sweet tooth like me, drizzle more honey on the top while it’s hot out of the oven and sprinkle on more sugar!

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